It seems like real estate agents get a continuous stream of calls from magazines and online publications congratulating them for being selected as a top realtor or agent. It usually does not take to long for the caller then to mention the fee for being featured in their publication. Many times I get these calls from magazines I have never even heard of, but sometimes they come from better known ones. When I am in the office I can often hear other people getting the solicitations as the caller moves alphabetically through the broker list.
So this brings up the question of should you pay to be featured in these “Best of” real estate agent or Realtor publications? For starters, if a significant marketing fee is required to be in it chances are they are not really a credible source for helping the public determine who is a top agent or Realtor. That does not mean you should automatically disqualify it though.
If that is the best and most cost effective way for you to get yourself in front of your target market, then it may be worth it. This of course depends on the cost as well as the reach of the publication to the market your are targeting. If you think it will be one of your more cost effective ways to get in front of that target and help you connect buyers and sellers, then it might be a good decision. I would also weigh this against the reputation of the publication and the specific selection criteria. Our teams, The Keri Shull and Orange Line Living teams have recently passed on the Washingtonian’s Best of Real Estate selections because of the continual lowering of production standards required to be in the magazine.
The most accurate and well known rankings I have seen are the Real Trends Rankings that are published in the Wall Street Journal. There is a small fee to apply, but this is to cover the cost of the research and verification required to compile such an extensive national real estate rankings publication. Every year, real estate agents can apply in the first quarter and the rankings are published around the end of June.
Real Trends ranks both teams and agents nationally by number of transaction sides, total volume and average price point. Each category presents the top 250 agents in the country. They also break the rankings down by state in a separate ranking system called America’s Best. So if you think you have a shot at making the list I definitely recommend applying to it.